Lean Six Sigma in Supply Chain: Karthikeyan


Karthikeyan has 11 years of rich experience in Logistics and Procurement. He worked with TATA steel and got interested in Six Sigma approach to quality management . He was mostly involved as a stakeholder from the procurement area in the projects earlier. His involvement was restricted in providing knowledge for process improvement and input to green belt and black belt. Initially he worked on six sigma approach to quality management project to improve the purchase order cycle time. This project gave him exposure to all six sigma processes. He felt it was a milestone in terms of applying techniques and getting buy in from other stakeholders and senior people. He did his Green Belt certification four months before and actively trying opportunities to implement the same. He currently is involved in pre sales activities, marketing IT products in supply chain area. He also works on consulting activities for implementing six sigma approach to quality management in client’s premise.

He feels there are two main tools which made a great impact on the process improvement using DMAIC tools by phase. The first one is applying hypothesis testing and identifying critical X. He says there were as many as 20 factors which would affect sales and not all were significant. Through DMAIC tools by phase they could find exact factors which are creating issues and worked on them only to find the improvement of 30% along with increased sale of INR 6,00,000 per month. Now they are planning to enrich their own application with DMAIC tools by phase where the application can identify critical Xs.

The second scenario he mentions is about the usage of control chart in reporting application. Before they used to have separate team for the same and it used to take a lot of time. Then they made the interface ready wherein the sales team can see different control charts on the dashboard and understand what is going on. They can take action immediately if something is wrong. This has proved to be of immense use to the customer in process improvement practices.